Friday, July 29, 2011

Saying Goodbye to "My Twin"

Hey Everyone!

Well it sure sounds like the family reunion was just a blast and the pictures that you all sent me were so awesome! I can't believe all the stuff you guys crammed into that one week! I loved the story about uncle lee in the tighties! haha. Man i wish i could have seen that! Shout out to Auntie Jane again! This time for your birthday! Hope you have an awesome day. I love you!

Well so this week i said goodbye to Elder Neeley and Elder Kofford my old zone leaders. If there is one person that i have ever met that is my twin it would be elder Neeley! We don't look alike but i swear that we are the exact same person. It has been way fun getting to know him and it was sad to see them go. Elder Kofford was an awesome piano player! one of the best i have ever seen. He can play by ear, so any song he has heard, he could play for you! we would go over to the main building after planning and just yell out songs for him to play and listen to him for a while. He can play any church hymn without the book and make them even better! And then on top of that, he could play any songs like the one from inception, styx (that's funny what you said about their concert, but that sounds like it was way fun, mom and dad!), pirates, and a bunch of other way sweet songs! Man it was fun to here music, because here in the mtc we can't listen to any music or anything!

Well now that they are gone i have made some other fun friends that are way nice! Our new zone leaders are really great! Oh btw dad, Elder Johnson was made the new district leader of our district and he is a great guy! Mom, no we don't have any sisters in our zone, which is kind of a good thing because the food here gives you a little gas, if you know what i mean! haha. But you have got to love it!

Well you guys are always wondering how the spanish is going and i guess it is going ok! I need to crack down really hard these last couple weeks here because i still don't feel too comfortable! I am sure that it will be ok though. I have faith that the lord will help me out every step of the way. Our teachers are really great, but just yesterday we had a substitute and the guy was amazing! He taught us all these things that really helped him on his mission, and then he talked about mexico for a while, because he served there as well. It got me so pumped up! I mean, i like this place but i can't wait to get out and go to the field!

The firesides and everything that we have are just awesome here and they really get you excited to serve. They are usually given by people that have been in the quorum of the 70 but are no longer serving. And at the firesides we have sung "Called to serve" a couple times, and i don't think there is anything more powerful than that! 2500 missionaries singing that song will get you feeling the spirit. That is for sure!!

So every week we teach lessons to our teachers as progressive investigators, so we give them a different lesson every time in spanish, and then we also teach in the TRC, which is where volunteers will come in and we teach them as if they are investigators. It is really tough sometimes because my spanish isn't great, but it's fun. Sometimes they will ask me a question and i won't really know what they said and am just like "si, si!" haha. Then it's a little awkward and i figure out that they actually asked me a question! haha. so yeah, i have to come along a lot these next couple weeks so i don't just look like a total newb out there!

I am so glad that i ended up with Elder Holmes and Sonntag in my room! We are always just laughing and have a good time talking with each other. I might go a little bit crazy if i couldn't laugh like i have been! It makes me not miss home, or even have time to think about how hard it can get here sometimes! They are great guys and my companion is awesome, as well! His spanish is actually very good so i have him make me quizzes a lot and i feel like he has helped my spanish out a lot. All the rest of the guys in my district are pretty boss as well! I am having a great time with all of them!

Well this church is true! I know that without a single doubt in my mind. Jesus Christ loves us just as much as he loved the people in the bible, and therefore, has given us a prophet in our day, to lead Christ's church on the earth today! Through the Book of Mormon we can receive the answers to ALL of our questions! Christ lives!

I love You all

Elder holmes

P.S I love getting letters and that is something that i won't have the luxury of much longer!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Everything's Great!

Hey Family,

Well to start it off i would just like to say that I am SO glad that Jane is doing ok! You are in my prayers auntie Jane and i Love you so much! Also i would like to give a shout out to Mike winters for his First save as a firefighter! That is so freaking legit and i am way proud of you! I am missing the rest of the family as you guys are all up in telluride having the time of your life! That trip sounds like so much fun and i only wish i was there to whoop up on you guys in Mafia! Haha. Man I have so many fond memories of our last family reunion up in Minnesota! Those were some of the best times and i love our Family!

I am glad to hear that dad is still able to gimp around and do everything! And i am so glad that you and Andy finally got to do some bonding with your weird passion for fly fishing. Haha. I am glad there is someone now in the family with that same interest!

Well everything here is going just great and i am still coming along every day with my spanish skills. I am starting to teach a lot of lessons in spanish and i feel like it is actually coming really good. However my conversational spanish isn't that great and the subjunctive just has so many FREAKing rules to it! haha.

SO I was wicked pumped to hear that Jimmer won the ESPY. Tell him that is just way awesome and congrats! I am glad he beat out cam newton! haha. I am meeting some awesome people over here in my district and outside of it! Elder Pinho in my district is an awesome guy from Brazil! He and i this last week put together a legit volleyball team that was just poning every other team on the court! My zone leaders Elder Neeley and Elder Kofford are so Sweet! We have become way good friends and we joke around all the time. Another guy in their district Elder Heaps is an awesome elder! Gosh i love those guys so much but the sad thing is is that they leave this next monday so i am going to have to make some new friends i guess! which i am really bad at that! haha.

I am going to be released as district leader on sunday which is kind of sad because i have enjoyed getting to know all of the guys in our district personally and leading the discussions after firesides and for district meetings! It will be nice to have another district leader that i can just help out instead of nagging all of them to brush their teeth on time and stuff like that! haha. They are terrible at that! haha.

Well i am just doing great and to everyone that wrote i will try to write back! I loved the letter from Elise and it made my day! I will be writing your own individualized letter today! And Andy would be happy to know that i have quite the tie collection and people want my ties! haha.

I love you all so much and i continue to get faster at emailing so i think my letters are getting longer but maybe not! Haha. I think that is all for now! have fun up in telluride!

Elder Holmes

Friday, July 15, 2011

Messi & Dollhauser at the MTC

Hey, Family and friends!

Hey thanks so much for all the Emails and letters i have received this week! I would like to start by saying Happy Birthday to The big Grandad!! Big 82 that is way legit! I love you so much Grandad! Well the pictures you guys sent me made me a little bit jealous, i am not going to lie! That cliff that you guys jumped looked so sweet! It came out perfectly over the water and it looks like the spot you parked the house boat was way cool! And also, thanks for the pictures of lee's eagle project! Lee i am so proud of you, and it looks like you had such an awesome turn out. You did such a fantastic job with that and i hope you feel really proud of what you just did! You're the man. I am not going to lie, my soccer game is coming along pretty well here in the MTC. I have looked a little like Messi out on the field. scoring all the time and what not! i mean its an "nbd just a huge bd" -Tony Smith haha.

Dad i am so glad that you listened to mom on this one! man that is scary but i am glad Heavenly Father is watching out for you! And i am way glad that you are starting to see some good progression with your recovery. I am praying for you. We need you to stay healthy pops! Mom the answer to your question, i would like some of those like propel/gatorade/kool aid packets if you wouldn't mind! It was tough to see ELder stutz, Smith, Sonne, and Messner leave this week! It was way fun having those guys in here to see them and play sports with them everyday! I am meeting a ton of new people though, and am having a blast. Two of our missionaries in our district left for the peru MTC this week so we are down to just 10 missionaries. It was sad to see them go but we are still having so much fun as a district! the guys are way tight.

Hey no one ever told me how the draft went with all of my clothes and shoes! Maybe Nick could write me and tell me, since i haven't heard from him yet! And thanks for the little package you sent me from Powell with all of those fun letters, and thanks mom for that nice dearelder package you sent me. My Spanish is coming slowly but surely! I get a little frustrated with myself when i can't remember things that i just learned! Spanish is hard and i am working harder then ever! All we do here is study! but i am loving it and can feel myself slowly getting better. it is just a little slower than i wish it was. i have been trying to roll my r's but it is so stinkin hard! My teachers are way nice and they seem pretty good with their spanish. They invite the spirit and do a good job keeping it there with us in class.

The temple is now closed so we won't be able to go until the last week of the month! That kind of stinks! We heard this amazing talk given by elder holland. he gave it here at the mtc many years ago and it just gets you so pumped for a mission! you guys will have to try to find it! its like an hour long but it is so good! I don't really know what its called though, that's the only thing, but its on missionary work of course!

Well i had a good indicator of how much fun i am having here at the MTC when i played volleyball. I was my old self yelling at everyone and jumping all in the sand for the volleyball! haha. And of course, i won. You could call me the MTC Dollhauser (that is a professional volleyball player btw). haha. Well everything is good for me and I hope all is well back home or wherever everyone is!

Love you all,
Elder Holmes

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Week 2: "Getting the Hang of It"

Hey Everyone!

Well this week was another successful one. Saturday night we had a 4th of July activity that was so awesome and the spirit was way strong there. Then afterwards we got to go outside and watch the fireworks and eat ice cream and we didn't get into our rooms till like 11. That was the most freedom we have had in a while! haha. Then sunday night we had a fireside where Elder Oaks daughter played the violin for all of us. She is like top 10 violinists in the world! She was so legit.

The spanish is really pretty hard but i am working at it. We taught our first lesson in spanish the other day just to one of the kids in the advanced class and he was not very nice to say the least! He wasn't too complimentary about our spanish but its whatevs. haha. At least we did it and now i have a little more confidence in teaching. My teachers are really great and do a good job of inviting the spirit.

Some kid in gym broke his ankle in gym this week and it was like fully twisted to the side. He thinks he will have to go home. He isn't in my district but i just saw it all happen. I saw elder Maguett today for the first time so that was way fun. And then the fun of the week really came with what happened yesterday to me. My mission president called me into his office and told me that i was getting a new companion just for the night. They had some problems with a companionship in the other district, so they decided to put the kid with me. He is actually being sent home today because he is a patheological liar. He told his old companion that he was going to kill him! They didn't want any conflict so they decided to put him with me! yeah i got a great night sleep last night as he was sleeping right above me in the bunks! not! haha. He was a nice guy, but literally cried on me the whole night and tried to convince me to do things that i knew he wasn't supposed to be doing! Well its a long story but that is the jist of things and i am still alive to write you this email so i guess that is a good thing! haha.

My Companion, Elder Watson, is doing well and we get along way good. After having that kid for a night i can literally handle anything i think! It was one of the hardest things of my life but a good experience. I know the Lord works in mysterious ways and we all have to grow somehow. My companion falls asleep all the time though so i am constantly having to wake him up! haha. I didn't think you could get any worse than me, but i haven't really fallen asleep in class or anything since i have been here! pretty impressive huh?

I got to go off campus the other day to take elder Coley to the doctors office. I rode in a car for the first time in a couple weeks. It was a big deal! haha. Well everything else is going just dandy for me. I am loving the experience. And oh yeah, my mission president seemed like a pretty nice guy. These emails are probably so jumbled up but i am still getting the hang of it!

Well love you lots,
Elder Holmes

Sunday, July 3, 2011

First E-Mail from the MTC

Hey everyone,

Well this is my first p day i have had and the first time i have been able to write to everyone! This first week has already gone by so fast and i am already having a ton of fun. Where to begin! Last week when i got here they had the new mission president training going on so a ton of the general authorities were here during the week. We had the privilege to listen to Elder Bednar on Friday and he talked on how to be a good missionary. I also got to shake Elder Oaks hand so that was pretty legit! Also they had some other great speakers talk to us that were from the quorum of the seventy and what not.

Well Spanish is going ok i guess! it is pretty tough and is kind of kicking my butt right now but it's only the first week so i guess that is fine. I can pray and bear my testimony and stuff in spanish but that is about it. I have some pretty nice teachers so i should be totes ok. Since i have been here i have seen everyone that i know in here i think. I have the same gym time with Elder Stutz (Tanner), Elder Salisbury, and Elder Messner (who is the guy from my byu ward that's also going to Mexico City with me.) And i get to see Elder Smith quite often and its always fun talking with him. Man you would think i would have a lot to say but it has only been a week and i am bad at writing my thoughts down (sorry mom i will hopefully get better).

Today on our p day we got to go to the temple which was a way nice break from everything. We are kept extremely busy here with classes and studying all day everyday. My District is way awesome! I was made district leader last week. We have some awesome guys in with really strong testimonies! Some of them are much better at Spanish than i am but it is good for me to be able to hear them talking all the time. My companion is Elder Watson (i know pretty awesome that Holmes and Watson are together! I am almost positive that the MTC workers lined that one up on purpose! We have people ask us all the time if we are companions! Any one that doesn't understand this combo of Holmes and Watson probably should get out from under your rock. haha). He is a great guy though from Boise and he is going to the same mission as me along with five of the other guys in our district. In my room are Elder Sontag, another Elder Holmes, my companion Elder Watson, and me. The other two are way nice guys and share my same loves for playing basketball and sports, which we get an hour for everyday.

The food here isn't half bad either! although i bet you money i am already putting on weight! I can already tell. But its whatevs. I had a little flash of homesickness this week just for a second when i bit into this nasty sandwhich, and the only thought i had was "my family is down at Lake powell right now having a delicious barbeque!" haha. But that was shortly overcome because i know why i am here and i wouldn't even change the few experiences i have had here for anything, let alone the experiences i will have on the rest of my mission. My testimony is growing everyday and i know that this church is the most true thing on the earth. I know that by praying and reading the scriptures, we can become closer to God and fulfill the things that he would have us do.

Thanks to all of those who sent me letters this last week! they meant a lot to me as i have little to no contact with the outside world so thanks for the updates on the draft and the bachelorette and what not! haha. Well that's it for this week but i can't wait to hear from you guys again! love you all so much! Christ Lives.

Elder Holmes